However, the real potential for developing relations lies in the possible resumption of free trade negotiations. Their suspension in 2013 hit the partnership hard, as the lack of discussions on economic cooperation was misinterpreted by most as a lack of political interest. Seen from Delhi, the EU has gradually become an annex to its bilateral relations with EU member states. The EU-India Agreement on Science and Technology Cooperation, concluded in 2001 and renewed in 2010 and 2016, is the cornerstone of cooperation between research and innovation with India. Negotiations for a comprehensive free trade agreement between the EU and India began in 2007 and suspended in 2013, with ambitions between the EU and India lacking. The EU remains committed to working towards an ambitious, comprehensive and balanced free trade agreement with India, which meets the best interests of each side and is a win-win. The EU continues its cooperation with India to ensure that such an agreement is economically viable, by providing both sides with genuine new market openings in all sectors, including a strong rules-based component and including a full chapter on trade and sustainable development, including to deal with social and environmental consequences. At the same time, the EU is ready to consider entering into negotiations for an autonomous investment protection agreement, which would enhance the legal security of investors on both sides. Political background, bilateral agreements on science and technology, funding, projects and contacts For the 15th EU-India summit, the postponement of the initial March date would have been in its favour.
At a meeting on 15 July 2020, there was a spirit of strengthened cooperation between the partners, partly due to China`s confidence-based foreign policy in recent times, but also to increased awareness of economic opportunities, which have remained largely untapped. At present, India`s trade regime and regulatory environment remain relatively restrictive. Technical barriers to trade (OTC), health and plant health measures (SPS), deviations from international standards and agreements, and discrimination based on India`s legislative or administrative measures affect a wide range of sectors, including goods, services, investment and public procurement. Security cooperation is the area in which political investment is most important. With the institutionalization of the maritime security dialogue and the stated objective of exploring connectivity in the region, cooperation in the Indo-Pacific area is now officially on the agenda. In the Indo-Pacific region, geopolitics will develop in the coming years. If the EU really wants to be seen as a global player, it must strengthen its presence in the region in its own right, beyond the initiatives of France and, more recently, Germany. India was one of the first countries to establish relations with the European Union.
The 1993 Joint Political Declaration and the 1994 Cooperation Agreement were the basic agreements for bilateral partnership. In 2004, India and the European Union became “strategic partners”. A joint action plan was adopted in 2005 and updated in 2008. The India-EU Joint Declarations were issued in 2009 and 2012 following the India-EU summits.  Relations between the EU and India have been described as high and substanceless rhetoric.    India and the EU have been working on a large-scale trade and investment agreement (BTIA) since 2007, but India`s trade regime and regulatory environment remain relatively restrictive. Seven rounds of negotiations have been concluded without reaching a free trade agreement Discussions on a bilateral eu-India-India bilateral trade and investment agreement have stalled due to the absence of differences on issues such as the level of direct resources and market access, generic drug production, greenhouse gas emissions , civil nuclear energy, agricultural subsidies, financial sector regulation and guarantees, tax evasion cooperation